A Word from the Principal’s Office

By Dawn De Busk
Staff Writer

RAYMOND – With an approaching (two weeks from now) school board vote on whether or not to continue with the proposed closure of Jordan Small Middle School, JSMS Principal Randy Crockett was busy Monday – in the middle of teacher and staff workshops while the student body is on its week-plus Thanksgiving break.

On Dec. 8, the Regional School Unit No. 14 Board of Directors will be faced with the decision to either put the brakes on the proposal, or to move forward with it.

As recently as this spring, the discussion about closing a school came up, Crockett said.

“Basically, what I was asked was: If two years down the road, could we accommodate all the kids at one school,” he said. “It would require retro-fitting. It would require squeezing the building. The question that was asked is: ‘Can it be done?’ And, ‘Yes’ it can be done. But, is it desirable? That’s what the board is wrestling with right now.”

“I figured the k-8 option would be pursued in the spring. So, I was figuring it was going to take two years to make the changes to the facility. We still have a declining enrollment. It’s been declining for 6 years. On a downward trend, the projections have proved to be fairly accurate,” he said.

He said if the plan pans out, the school wouldn’t be able to deliver some programs in the same way as it did at JSMS, but students would still be offered the same programs just in a down-sized space. Also, a few teachers who had private offices will be sharing office space.

About a dozen students from JSMS have made their opinions known, testifying at one or both public hearings.

The proposal for their school to be closed has caused quite a few questions, Crockett said, and he fields many of them.

“Kids have asked teachers about it. The teachers answered. The kids had lots of questions and all of the staff is trying to answer kids’ questions. We haven’t done anything formally” – as far as holding a school assembly, he said.

“The petition was started by a few 7th graders, who then circulated it,” he said, of the petition signed by JSMS students, and turned over to the board by the group who spoke.

Please follow and like us: